This year's five commissioned writers are Rinne Groff (Saved), Beau Willimon (Farragut North, Lower Ninth), Mark Schultz (Everything Will Be Different, The Gingerbread House, A Brief History of Helen of Troy), Lucy Kirkwood (Tinderbox) and Hannah Moscovitch (East of Berlin).
Details about the new works being created by the writers are not yet available.
The Alfred P. Sloan Foundation has provided a grant to Manhattan Theatre Club "to support the development of plays that address themes of math, science and technology or plays that depict scientists, mathematicians and engineers as major characters in order to bridge the divide between the arts and sciences."
MTC's new director of artistic development Jerry Patch now oversees the program. "The Sloan Foundation continues to be a primary supporter of serious new work," Patch stated. "Their leadership and commissioning support for playwrights is vital to our theatres."
"We are delighted to continue our fruitful collaboration with MTC, one of the nation's finest theatre companies," stated Doron Weber, Sloan Program Director. "This bumper crop of exciting new work shows that science and technology remains fertile ground for the theatrical imagination and that innovative playwrights will seek to delve into the mysterious heart, and the hard drive, of modern life to give us undreamt-of visions and experiences." "MTC's eight year partnership with the Sloan Foundation has supported and expanded our mission of developing new work," stated Annie MacRae, MTC's play development associate and Sloan Project Manager. "We remain grateful for the Foundation's support."
MTC first collaborated with the Sloan Foundation in 2000 with the production of David Auburn’s Tony Award- and Pulitzer Prize-winning drama Proof. MTC's partnership with the Sloan Foundation has expanded to include multiple annual commissions for emerging, mid-level and established writers as well as a production grant to stage Sloan-related works. In addition to Proof, Sloan supported MTC's production of Charlotte Jones' Humble Boy in 2003.
Since partnering with the Sloan Foundation, MTC has commissioned a total of 22 writers including Craig Lucas, Shelagh Stephenson, Ron Hutchinson, Rona Munro, Itamar Moses, Bryony Lavery, Stephen Belber, Eric Simonson, Dava Sobel, Liz Meriwether, Peter Morris, Kenneth Lin and Brett Neveu.